Sydney was in glorious form as pristine conditions bathed Coogee Oval last Saturday. The added bonus was that University recorded a comprehensive dissection of Randwick by 57-17 to maintain their unbeaten run.
The Students commenced like a turbo charged Mack truck forcing turnovers from the kickoff. The pressure inflicted on Randwick soon brought the dividends when an attacking five metre lineout formed. University’s signature tradecraft was then executed with a tidal wave of moving hulking flesh inching its way towards the Dolphin Street goal line. Instead of burrowing for an omnivorous diet of toads and lizards, the erinaceous* hooker Declan Moore latched onto the maul and burrowed through scoring to add to his impressive tally.
After this warmup the muscles were flexed to be creative. Attacking just inside the Randwick half the ball was moved rapidly through the hands towards the western touchline. That lovely fellow fullback Tim Clements exploded into the backline leaving green jersey defenders in his wake. Clements had big inside centre Ofa Manufeotoa backing on his inside. The big O with arms and legs pumping barreled his way over the line for a 12-0 lead.
The remainder of the half was a plethora of high-speed rugby by the Students with the fast men wingers Matthew Hood and Henry Clunies-Ross causing untold havoc whenever they ran the ball. The score was 19-0 midway through the first half and University were playing a style of rugby which was relentless. Attack was at high speed whilst defence was brutal not allowing Randwick to reform.
As if he found an ancient Himalayan goat weed potion increasing speed and not have a single hair out of place similar to Brylcream, five-eighth Ben Hughes scored from a standing start. Hughes literally burst through the Randwick defence with not a single hand touching him to score a runaway try which he converted. Randwick did scavenge a try against the run of play after a University knock on. Their Waratah winger Ramm received a fast ball to the flanks and motored downfield. Halftime sounded with University enjoying a good lead of 26-5.
There was a healthy crowd on hand taking advantage of the sunshine. If University maintained their momentum in the second half it would be a grand social occasion at the nearby Pavilion later. The theme was to dress on a level and style commensurate with University’s fashionista icon winger Sepesa Loga-Tarogi the man who brings the F into fashion!
University commenced the second half as per the first with high pressure play forcing Randwick to make errors. Again, a rolling maul ended with the insatiable appetite for tries by hooker Moore.
A momentary lapse in discipline allowed Randwick to score after taking advantage of a loose University ruck. But this minor glitch enamored Moore again to score after another five-metre maul to notch his hattrick. To celebrate his 50th Grade game prop Tom Osborne scored a bullocking try from sustained picking and driving. The score line had ballooned to 50-10.
The last points for University were delivered straight from the kickoff. Replacement five eighth Daniel Poletto burst down through the middle leaving defenders clutching him. Poletto drew the defenders and had Clements in support to score a converted try of 57-10. Randwick did score another converted try but it was too late to mount any meaningful comeback. A final score line of 57-17 continued the Students unbeaten season.
The Poidevin Farr-Jones Cup was held aloft by Uni Captain Jack McCalman to be retained back at Camperdown.
Fifty game clubman and try scorer Tom Osborne could not hide the smile and delivered some inspiring words. “It’s great we beat Randwick at their home. I rank it up there with the 260 B.C. Battle of Changping where the Qin state defeats the Zhao state,” said the eastern scholar.
Andy McCalman, father of Captain Jack was equally impressed. “The team was merciless. They were scavenging and running amok like the mice on the farm!”
Next week University enjoy another bye and regroup to do battle with defending premiers Gordon at home.
*erinaceous - a person who looks like a hedgehog